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Things to know for International Students

As an international student, it can be challenging to study in a new country where the culture, and education system is different. This Blog has explained some of the key things to know as an International Student studying at LSBU.

VP Activities Anas standing in front of London South Bank University sign VP Activities Anas standing in front of London South Bank University sign



Things to know as an International Student at LSBU


As an international student, it can be challenging to study in a new country where the culture and education system is different. 

It can be overwhelming to adapt to the new normal which means leaving family & friends behind, getting a part-time job, making new friends, knowing the transportation system, emergency numbers, and understanding Health Care and banking system.

This Blog has explained some of the key things to know as an International Student: 

1. Safety

Generally, the UK is a safe country, ranked 45th as the safest among 163 countries. 

Emergency Numbers: To contact the Ambulance, Fire Department and Police, simply dial 999 or 112.

Avoid Dark & Empty Streets: Make sure to avoid dark and empty streets when you are alone, especially during the night. Take a licensed cab or use public transport, since it’s always better to stay on the safe side.

Internet Safety Tips: Do not give out personal details, photographs, or any other information to a stranger that could be used to identify you, your family, or where you live.
 

2. Opening a Bank Account

Students can open a bank account with top-rated banks like Barclays, Lloyds, HSBC, Santander etc. 

It normally requires proof of ID, Photos and a Student Letter (Which can be collected from the LSBU Student life centre in person/emailing them/Student Portal) and can take between 7 to 14 days to proceed. 

Here are some links for step by step guide-

3. Transport in London

London has one of the largest public transport networks in the world, with integrated underground, train and bus systems spanning the city. It’s possible to use a Student Oyster Card that provides discounts for travel or contactless bank cards

There are Buses, Underground (also known as Tube), Riverboats, taxis (like Uber, and Bolt), Santander Cycle, Emirates Airline Cable Cars and many more.

A bus journey normally costs £1.65 for an hour of unlimited travel. Santander cycle costs £2 for 24 hours (Note- needs to be docked every 30 mins otherwise would be fined), underground costs are based on Zones.

Here are some links for step by step guide- 

Oyster CardsLondon Maps & Guides, Public Transport in London
 

4. Health Care (NHS) 

International students have access to free-of-charge medical services for having health insurance. 

Make sure to register with a GP practice as soon as you arrive in the UK. 

Choose one that is convenient for you (with regard to services, facilities, performance, and location). 

You can visit your GP for any health concerns you might have and they will advise you on what you should do. Also for emergencies, you can go to any hospital nearby for free-of-charge treatments.

Here’s some link for step by step guide- 

Guide to the NHS
 

5. PRO Tips 

  • Collect BRP (Biometric Residence Permit) as soon as you arrive in the UK. It’s essential for travelling abroad, proof of residence. 
     

  • Apply for National Insurance (NI) as it’s needed to work in the UK. You can apply by calling 0800 141 2075. You need to have your Passport, BRP and Student letter on the appointment date. Useful link- Guide to NI
     

  • Student Jobs- With your Tier-4 student visa, you'll be able to work up to 20 hours per week while studying. You can work full-time during the holidays that are before and after your course starts. It’s possible to work in Supermarket, Cafe, Restaurants, Fast food shops, Food delivery, hotels, security etc  Useful Links- Guide to Jobs, Types of Job, Career Hub
     

  • Purchase a good network Sim Card such as EE, Three, O2, Vodafone, Giffgaff etc.
     

  • Understand your Campus facilities like Library, Student Life Centre, Student Union, Career Hub, Prayer Space, Cafe
     

  • Engage with Communities, Societies and Networks, participate at the free off-peak Gym in the University for all students etc. Useful Links- SU Events, Careers HUB, Library, Student Services
     

‘’Your challenges are our concern, South Bank Students' Union is here to represent your needs’’ 


Sources: 
https://www.studying-in-uk.org/uk-safety-guide-for-international-students/